December 11

Gift Recommendations – Nonfiction

December 11, 2014

I read far more fiction than nonfiction, and usually my nonfiction reads are in the form of memoirs (because I’m so intrigued with people and their stories). However, over the years, I have read some excellent fiction selections!

Letters of Note by Shaun Usher

I just finished this book last week, and shared my review. This is an amazing collection of letters with a great deal of historical significance that will draw most readers in. I think it would make a perfect gift, and it could be used as a coffee book table as well.

I Can Make You Sleep by Paul McKenna

We all know numerous people who struggle with sleep issues, and who wouldn’t want to discover some helpful hints to remedy that situation. Mc Kenna offers practical suggestions about optimal conditions for promoting sleep as well as techniques to use when you are having trouble sleeping. I can’t say that this book solved all of my sleep issues, but it did help!

The Happiness Project by Gretchen Ruben

This book was a life changer for me. Although Ruben is Type A to the extreme and her particular project was overwhelming, the overall message resonated with me. I have control over my own happiness, and it up to me to work towards achieving a greater sense of fulfillment. I far preferred this book to its follow-up Happiness at Home, which I have yet to finish. Numerous suggestions are included for reframing the way you live.

Sin in the Second City by Karen Abbott

An interesting look at life during the turn of the last century. It was fascinating for me to learn more about the corruption that existed on so many levels throughout the city of Chicago. I was also highly intrigued with the lifestyles that the madams lived and the regard with which they were held.

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

Such a well written, informative book. I learned sooooooo much about how World War II played out in Japan (it gets far less chatter than what happened in Europe). Parts of this book are definitely unsettling, but so worth the discomfort to better understand an important part of history. It’s been on the bestseller list forever, and it will soon be released as a movie!

Helter Skelter by Vincent Bugliosi

Prior to reading this book, I knew very little about Charles Manson, his groupies, and the destruction he created. This book is HIGHLY informative, but at times it does get a little bit long-winded and redundant (I try to keep in mind that the author was the prosecutor who spent a year and a half of his life consumed by this case). If you have any interest in learning more about this topic, this is definitely the book to read – just make sure that you have the time to do it (it’s a long one!!!!). 

Hurry Down Sunshine by Michael Greenberg

Greenberg really opens himself up to share his and his family’s experiences as they learn to cope with his daughter’s diagnosis of bipolar disorder. It gives an insider’s perspective of what the disorder can look like and the roads taken through diagnosis and treatment. This may help people who are currently working through the diagnosis of bipolar disorder in a family member.

The Innocent Man by John Grisham

This story definitely makes you think about your views on our justice system and the implications for guilty verdicts.

In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larsen

I have always been intrigued with the period of World History surrounding World War II. How is it possible that such atrocities could have happened? Erik Larsen provides some insight as to how events spun out of control in Germany. I found the book insightful from a historical perspective, but I also like how Larsen always adds the human element to make it more real for his readers.

What nonfiction books do you recommend?

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Posted December 11, 2014 by Lisa @ Reading, Writing, and Random Musings in category "gift ideas", "gifts


  1. By Vicky on

    Great recommendations! I’ve read several of these books – all great picks!

    1. By (Post author) on

      Thanks Vicky! I still want to read Columbine based on your recommendation!


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